Lager Bottle
Dress Image

The History of Oktoberfest Attire

During the 16th century, male and female workers wore the outfits while working in the fields. During the mid-19th century the traditional dress began to dye out thus causing the first movements to preserve the ancient traditional attire. The costume became more symbolic than practical and was often worn at official ceremonies. As time progressed the leather pants became shorter and the necklines began to plunge. In the 20th century the costumes were recognized as an established piece for special occasions such as weddings, official events and particularly for the beer tents of Oktoberfest. The 1970s introduced the “mini-dirndl” which is shorter in length than the traditional skirt and is more commonly seen at Oktoberfest celebrations today.

Modern Day Attire

1. Bavarian styled alpine hat: commonly made of suede or felt it is adorned with ostrich or pheasant feathers or a brush made of boar’s hair.

2. Trachten shirt: typically white or a simple blue, red or green checkered pattern it features bone buttons or ones embroidered with edelweiss.

3. Lederhosen: leather shorts that are often embroidered or embellished with stitching. Traditionally worn with suspenders.

4. Knee socks: traditionally white in color and made of wool.

5. Leather boots: non-Bavarians wear shoes that look like work boots but with cleats and buffed to shine. Bavarians traditionally wear Haferlschuh which was originally designed as a working-shoe that allowed for maximum performance on the difficult alpine ground. The Haferlschuh has a boat like front, deep cut sides and a nailed sole for stability.

6. Scarf: colorful and complimentary to the dress worn.

7. Dirndl blouse: worn in a variety of necklines from ultra-conservative to low cut. Traditionally short sleeved.

8. Bodice: worn over the dirndl blouse.

9. Dirndl: skirt that traditionally falls below mid-calf but it is commonly worn now at shorter lengths by tourists.

10. Pinafore: this apron like item indicates the status of a woman. If bound on her right side it indicates she is “taken,” if bound on her left it identifies that she is single. The pinafore should be the same length as the dirndl.

11. Leather shoes: shoes are low heeled loafers often in a “Mary Jane” style. Heels and toes of the shoe are cleated for the noise they make on the dance floor.

12. Stein: a giant vessel that typically holds a liter of beer.



[Myew - nik]

Located in Southern Germany with a population of 1.35 million, Munich, the capital city of Bavaria, was founded in 1158.